This is by no means meant as a panacea. If only it were so easy to transform a customer experience by implementing just five simple tips --voila! Our work here would be done. That certainly isn't the case. As you know, every customer experience is a chronological process customers pass through, and there's always room for improvement.
But it’s Friday. In honor of the end of the week, let’s take a breather from things more complex and talk about five simple things you can do today that will improve your customer experience.
1. Do what you said you were going to do.
I've said it before and I'll say it again (it really does bear repeating) every customer experience starts with that all-important triggering need. Any customer measures success based on if – and how well – the need that triggered them to act is solved. Your job is to fulfill that need, above all else. Yet how many things on your desk as you read this are intentions not yet completed? You may be waiting on a deliverable from another area of your company. You may have too many things to do. Today, pick one and find a way to get it done. Do what you said you were going to do when that customer first sought you out--solve their problem.
2. Keep it simple.
From store design to contact information to payment options, try to keep things as simple as possible. I know I'm not the only one who has been midway through an online purchase only to abandon my cart because there were just too many screens to slog through to confirm my order. Okay, maybe some simplification can't be done so quickly or easily, but there might be a few things you can simplify to make it easier on the people who want to give you money. Try this one: Take a look at the “Contact us” page on your website. Make sure it lists all relevant information: Phone numbers, email, and business hours if that applies to the work you do for your customers. Your goal here is to find one thing to make your customer’s relationship with you more simple.
3. Stop trying to make everyone happy.
I've said it. The Harvard Business Review has said it. Now it's time to stop. Your customers aren't paying you to make them happy--they're paying you to solve a need. A problem solved is a nice way to end things. Happiness? That's one of those unquantifiable rabbit holes that could cause your business to waste money. Lots of money. Instead stay focused on what your customer is willing to pay for in getting their need solved.
4. Empower employees.
Does this sound familiar? I hope so, because it's only been a few months since I talked about how employee experience has a positive impact on customer experience. When you empower employees to fulfill customer needs you demonstrate that not only do you trust their judgment but you also believe in their ability to do their job.
Humor me. Give it a shot. Smiling makes you look helpful and friendly. Done often it actually makes you more helpful and friendly. Who doesn't like that? You might be thinking, "I don't work with customers face to face.” That doesn't matter. Smile when you talk to prospects on the phone, they'll hear it in your voice. Smile when you're typing an email or smile when you're presenting an idea to your team. It really will help. This is one of those intangible components of customer experience that are hard to define but still matter a great deal.
So those are five quick (and somewhat) easy tips you can use to improve your customer experience. What are some of your favorite dead simple ways business leaders can improve customer experience?